2010 © brian adams
Humid and swelling with verdant life beneath intermittent showers of rain, Sitka is a breathtaking place in spring. The town is awakening after the long winter, the doors to restaurants and souvenir shops swung open like tiny yawns. The cruise ships can be seen throughout the day coming in after their long stretches; tourists meander through the streets in silly hats and brightly colored coats. The locals eye Brian and I with both the welcome and disdain we understand all too well: This is our home, they seem to say. You may find it beautiful, but you cannot possibly love it as we do. We do not own this place, as no one can own the earth, but we believe in this place enough to live here.
Brian and I are here to speak at and cover Institute of the North's Emerging Leaders Dialogue conference, where more than 100 young leaders in Alaska's communities will be meeting today, tomorrow, and Saturday to discuss various ways in which we can better our state, focusing on the idea that local internal assets bolster the strengths of our communities and the ways in which we, as Alaskans, are all connected by the issues we face.
These are just a few photos from our first two days here, taken traipsing around the town, along the coast, and through the grandeur of the historical Totem park.